DTP Prizes and Awards

CAP Congress – Student Presentation and Poster Competition

2022 Prize Winners

The winners of the 2022 DTP student oral presentations are:

1st Place: Karen Macias Cardenas (Queen’s University)

2nd Place: Samantha Buck (University of Guelph)

3rd Place: Georgios Palkanoglou (University of Guelph)

Honourable mentions: Kensuke Gallock Yoshimura (University of Waterloo), Diana Mendez Avalos (University of Waterloo), and Shafayat Shawqi (University of Alberta).

The winner of the poster competition is Liam Farrell (McMaster University).

Honourable mention: Joshua Cadogan (University of Guelph).

Past winners


The winners of the 2021 DTP student oral presentations are:

1st Place: Marianne Moore (University of British Columbia)

2nd Place (tie): Georgios Palkanoglou (University of Guelph) and Simran Nerval (Queen’s University)

Honourable mention: Maria Di Marco (University of Waterloo).

The winner of the poster competition is Spencer Silaste (University of Waterloo).

DTP/WITP P.R. Wallace Thesis Prize

In April each year, the Division of Theoretical Physics (DTP) and the Winnipeg Institute for Theoretical Physics (WITP) will award one DTP/WITP P.R. Wallace Thesis Prize to a student receiving a PhD degree in Physics from a Canadian University.

The thesis must be in theoretical physics and completed (final version) less than 2 years before the submission deadline of 15 January of the Prize year. The DTP/WITP P.R. Wallace Prize winner must be a member of the CAP and the DTP when the Prize is presented, at the annual Theory CANADA conference, in late May or early June.

Please visit our Thesis Prize Guidelines and Application page for rules and submission requirements.

2022 Thesis Prize Winner:

Alex May (University of British Columbia), with a thesis entitled “Quantum tasks in holography”.

Alex May holds a Bachelor of Physics from McGill University and a Master of Physics from the University of British Columbia. He completed his PhD at UBC in 2021, under the supervision of Prof. Mark Van Raamsdonk. Dr May is currently a postdoctoral researcher at Stanford University.

Past Winners:

2021: Jens Boos (University of Alberta), with a thesis entitled “Effects of Non-locality in Gravity and Quantum Theory”.

Jens Boos holds a Bachelor’s in Physics from RWTH Aachen and a Master’s in Physics from the University of Cologne. He completed his PhD as a Vanier Scholar at the University of Alberta in 2020, under the supervision of Prof. Valeri Frolov. His thesis was awarded the University of Alberta Faculty of Science Dissertation Award and a Springer Thesis Award. Dr Boos is currently a postdoctoral researcher at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia.

2020: Job Feldbrugge (University of Waterloo), with a thesis entitled “Path Integrals in the Sky – Classical and Quantum Problems with Minimal Assumptions”.

Job Feldbrugge holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Physics, Astronomy, and Mathematics from the University of Groningen, and finished part III of the mathematics tripos at the University of Cambridge. He completed his PhD at the Perimeter Institute and the University of Waterloo under the supervision of Neil Turok. Dr Feldbrugge is currently a joint postdoctoral researcher at the Perimeter Institute and Carnegie Mellon University.

2019: Robie Hennigar (PhD University of Waterloo, 2018) with a thesis entitled “Explorations in black hole chemistry and higher curvature gravity”, and Evan McDonough (PhD McGill University, 2017) with a thesis entitled “High Energy Physics and the Early Universe”.

2018: Philippe Landry (PhD University of Guelph, 2016) with a thesis entitled “Tidal Response of a Rotating Neutron Star in General Relativity.

2017: No competition held.

2016: Vincent Genest (PhD Université de Montréal 2015) with a thesis entitled “Algebraic Structures, Super-Integrable systems and Orthogonal Polynomials”.

2015: Soloman Akaranka Owerre (Ph.D. Université de Montréal 2014) Thesis: “Études de l’effet tunnel des spins quantiques macroscopiques” (Studies of the tunnel effect of macroscopic quantum spins).

About the DTP-WITP P. R. Wallace Prize

The DTP-WITP PhD Thesis Prize has been renamed the DTP-WITP P R Wallace PhD Thesis Prize. The change promotes awareness of the history of physics in Canada, by honouring a pioneer in Canadian theoretical physics.

The case for naming the prize after P R Wallace was made forcefully in:

  • B Joós (2006). “In Memoriam: Philip Russell Wallace, 1915–2006”. Physics in Canada. July/August 2006: 134.
  • K Gottfried, J D Jackson, C S Lam (Sep 2006). “Philip Russell Wallace”. Physics Today. 59 (9): 78.
  • P R Wallace. Wikipedia page (last edited 20 June 2018).


  • Wallace founded the DTP and served as its first Chair.
  • Like the prize winners, Wallace did his PhD in Canada. He was a PhD student at the U of T of Infeld, a collaborator of Einstein (and also Born).
  • Wallace was a long-serving professor at McGill, and a trail blazer for theoretical physics in Canada. First appointed in the Math Department, he later created and led McGill’s Institute of Theoretical Physics, and finally managed to have theoretical physics integrated into the Physics Department.
  • Wallace’s 1947 Physical Review paper, “The Band Theory of Graphite’’, has now been cited more than 5300 times (Google Scholar). His two-dimensional calculation applies to graphene. The 2010 Nobel Prize was awarded “ground-breaking experiments regarding the two-dimensional material graphene.’’
  • Wallace worked in an impressive range of topics, including relativity, nuclear physics, and condensed matter physics.
  • He had an impact on the teaching of physics. Wallace wrote 3 books, including a textbook on mathematical methods in physics. He also played a role in the creation of Jackson’s important book on electrodynamics: in the preface to its first edition we read “Special mention must be made of P R Wallace of McGill, who gave me the opportunity and encouragement to teach what was then a rather unorthodox course in electromagnetism.’’